Democratic Progressive Party presidential candidate Frank Hsieh (
Hsieh said Secretary-General of the Presidential Office Yeh Chu-lan (葉菊蘭), a popular Hakka politician, became the first female mayor of a special municipality by stepping in as acting mayor of Kaohsiung after he was appointed premier in 2005.
"She followed my step in becoming the mayor," Hsieh said. "And since I was once the premier, she may become a premier, too."
"If I am elected president, the nation may also have a female Hakka president in the future," he said.
Hsieh made the comments in a rally held in front of Hsinchu's Yimin Temple yesterday. The occasion yesterday also marked the first time that Hsieh, his running mate Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) and Yeh were all present at a public gathering since Hsieh's announcement of his choice of Su as his vice presidential running mate on Aug. 15.
Although Hsieh did not choose Yeh, who had expressed her interest in being Hsieh's running mate, Yeh was tapped by President Chen Shui-bian (
Hsieh has billed his union with Su and Yeh as the "golden triangle."
Yesterday's rally was held to drum up the Hakka community's support for Hsieh and Su, Hsieh's campaign office spokesman Chao Tien-lin (
Hsieh pledged to promote harmony among different ethnic groups at the rally.
"I believe in coexistence. I believe we have to prevent children from all ethnic communities in Taiwan from feeling threatened, in danger or persecuted, whether they be Hoklo, Aborigines, Hakka or Mainlanders," Hsieh said.
"This is our dream. No matter where you come from, no matter which ethnic community you were born in, we are all the same," he said.
Hsieh also vowed to oppose the idea of a cross-strait common market and unification with China advocated by his Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) counterpart, Ma Ying-jeou (
"We will never allow Chinese laborers to compete for jobs with us in Taiwan," said Hsieh. "We will never allow Chinese women to compete for Taiwanese husbands. We will never allow low-quality merchandise from China to threaten our livelihood."